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M A G A Z I N E
PLUS TIJUANA PANTHERS INTERVIEW FRANKMUSIK, THE TEMPER TRAP AND MSTRKRFT ALBUM REVIEWS THE INVENTION OF LYING AND SURROGATES PREVIEWS MESRINE: KILLER INSTINCT AND THE UGLY TRUTH REVIEWS ART BY MICHAEL WANDELMAIER AND STYLE BY MARQUIS MONTES
THE MOST CONTROVERSIAL FILM OF THE MODERN ERA, TURNS OUT, COULD BE ONE OF THE FINEST
FAN THE FIRE
M A G A Z I N E
EDITOR SAM BATHE SAM.BATHE@FANTHEFIREMAGAZINE.COM
FEATURES WRITER MARTIN ROBERTS MARTIN.ROBERTS@FANTHEFIREMAGAZINE.COM
ART & DESIGN SAM BATHE
FEATURES WRITER DAN HOPCHET DAN.HOPCHET@FANTHEFIREMAGAZINE.COM
STAFF WRITER PATRICE JACKSON PATRICE.JACKSON@FANTHEFIREMAGAZINE.COM
EDITORIAL ASSISTANT EVA ALEXANDRA LIU EVA.LIU@FANTHEFIREMAGAZINE.COM
ONLINE PUBLISHING ASSISTANT MICHAEL EVANS CONTRIBUTORS VALERIE BOULET, GEORGE BROOKS, JONATHAN GREEN, ROB HENNEBERRY, JOSE ENRIQUE MONTES HERNANDEZ, TEMOOR IQBAL, STEVE SHI, MICHAEL WANDELMAIER & WE BARBARIANS
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MUSIC 12 14 15 INTERVIEW TIJUANA PANTHERS ALBUM REVIEWS ALBUM ROUND-UP 1, INCLUDING FRANKMUSIK, THE TWANG & THE TEMPER TRAP ALBUM ROUND-UP 2, INCLUDING MSTRKRFT, TOMMY SPARKS & THE DEAD WEATHER FILM 16 18 20 23 24 25 26 27 29 30 PREVIEWS SURROGATES THE INVENTION OF LYING 2012 REVIEWS ANTICHRIST THE UGLY TRUTH MESRINE: KILLER INSTINCT PUBLIC ENEMIES LAND OF THE LOST IMAGINE THAT DVD REVIEWS DVD ROUND-UP, INCLUDING WATCHMEN, KNOWING & FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS ART 32 FEATURE BRAVE NEW WORLD STYLE 38 FEATURES SOMEWHERE UNDER THE RAINBOW
AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 5
critics are generally split down the middle declaring it either a masterpiece or an atrocity. they feed off each other to produce imagery revelling in both their strengths. A team in work and in life. Enjoy the issue Working as solo freelance photographers before forming a partnership in their native Montreal. under the name Marquis Montes. Land Of the Lost and Imagine That. but this month has been particularly busy. With scenes of graphic sexual violence and a tormenting narrative only Lars von Trier could accomplish. our club night Friday Night Fist Fight is back again. Concentrating their efforts in style photography.Antichrist was always going to steal this month’s cover. it’s an equally busy four weeks ahead. but in particular. The most controversial film in years. Antichrist was always going to steal this month’s cover. Valerie Boulet and Jose Enrique Montes Hernandez are two of the most exciting minds in the fashion game. to tell a story and evoke something more than simply beauty. whom despite their fresh faces. they are at the beginning of what promises to be an exciting career and already two signature shoots down the line. starring Bruce Willis.. Whether we liked it or not.. Canada. Ricky Gervais’ The Invention Of Lying and the world-ending 2012. This month we’re also giving away copies of Flight Of The Conchords: Season 2. On the style and art fronts we have great features from brilliant illustrator Michael Wandelmaier and photographer pairing Marquis Montes. please get in touch.EDITOR’S LETTER “ . Antichrist garnered all the press. As for this month in the entertainment industry. French gangster movie Mesrine: Killer Instinct. The Temper Trap and MSTRKRFT. so if you’re interested in reaching our expansive readership across the very latest of platforms. Marquis Montes have caused a stir many photographers could only dream of.. if not the awards.. We also preview new graphic novel adaptation Surrogates. ” CONTRIBUTOR OF THE MONTH There’s never a quiet month in the Fan the Fire offices. now settled monthly at Catch in east London. Having completed their degrees only a few years ago. on concept. The Twang. On the audio side we chat to latest LA export Tijuana Panthers. We also check out new albums from Frankmusik. each making waves in their respective field for inspiring and imaginative work. setting an impossibly high bar for newcomers hoping to break in on their direction. FIND MORE OF MARQUIS MONTES’ STUNNING PHOTOGRAPHY AT MARQUISMONTES. they work not only on esthetics. but most importantly. Find out what we thought in our film section along with reviews of rom-com The Ugly Truth.COM Sam Bathe 6 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 . already boast an EP reminiscent of a surf-influenced Strokes. Our iPhone app now in the iTunes store we’ve had a tonne of follow-up work to be getting on with. at this year’s Cannes Film Festival. our advertising media pack is now up to date.
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E2 8DA CATCH AT .FAN THE FIRE MAGAZINE & CLUB MIRROR KISSES PRESENTS FRIDAY NIGHT FIST FIGHT ELECTRONICA // POST-PUNK // NEW WAVE FRIDAY 24TH JULY FREE ENTRY! 9PM 2AM TO DJs BIG SHADOWSTEP (SUPERFILTH) EVA LAS VEGAS (BUTTONED DOWN DISCO) SOI SOI (BUTTONED DOWN DISCO) ZAPP BRANNIGAN (MIRROR KISSES) CLUBMIRRORKISSES.COM ARTWORK BY JAMES JIRAT PATRADOON 22 KINGSLAND ROAD SHOREDITCH LONDON.
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8. were a completely different story. the band’s New-Order-esque electro went down a storm. 7 compilation and being booked for festivals across the summer. in between the bands much-hyped DJ duo Aeroplane spun electro tracks from throughout the decades. Northern Ireland. Two Door Cinema Club MUSIC Live Review: Kitsuné Maison at Scala To celebrate the release of the next instalment in their amazing Maison compilations. despite being featured on Kitsuné’s Maison vol.BEST OF THE BLOG Listen To More. Last of the major acts on the night was We Have Band. First up were Chew Lips. MUSIC Out of Bangor. autoKratz still have a lot going for them and are more than worth checking out. Delphic. and while this time around ‘Something Good Can Work’ might have been a small scale event. next year don’t be surprised if their track is the sound of the summer. on Saturday 20th June. on the rise. Russell on synth and laptop/ mixer set the beat for vocalist David to jump about and scream out the band’s minimalistic lyrics. and with a refreshingly entertaining EP under their belts. Playing almost non-stop to try and pack in as many tracks as possible. Two Door Cinema Club’s indie pop electronica is effortlessly uplifting and makes you want to get up on your feet and dance. Breakthrough single ‘Hear It In The Cans’ was always going to steal the show but the rest of their music is far from lagging behind. Two Door Cinema Club somehow remain unsigned. Hopefully it isn’t too long until Maison Vol. From the stunning ‘Doubt’ to Maison compilation offering ‘Counterpoint’. front-woman Tigs was very frustrating in both vocal performance and on-stage demeanour. YOU CAN LISTEN TO MORE TWO DOOR CINEMA CLUB AT MYSPACE. Headliners for the night.. Their jerky riffs are a sound far beyond the clichéd indie bands bogging down the industry at the moment. and on Kitsuné’s own label. autoKratz worked the crowd into a frenzy with their pumping rave-disco sound. Kitsuné took over Scala. The recent Kitsuné interaction also brought a single release on the cool French electro label. recently took a little time out to finish up new tracks for their album. Despite looking like he needed to dash to the bathroom for the entire set. blending their tracks seamlessly. the future is looking very bright indeed. bar single ‘Solo’. London. Put on in association with Neon Noise Project. it’s no surprise Bloc Party plucked Delphic out to support them for their recent Olympia dates. and though we were expecting a lot from this London three-piece.. whom after touring almost every London club at the start of the year. however.COM/TWODOORCINEMACLUB 10 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 . But don’t expect that to last for long. but the real attraction were the live performances on offer. whom themselves never really make the breakthrough they deserved. Though their music doesn’t have quite the emphatic power of peers The Whip. proving a fitting end to the electro affair. You’ll be seeing a lot from Delphic in the coming months.
Undeclared feels like it paved the way for current underrated show Greek. during his first year at college. and Fox cited poor ratings for it’s cancellation in 2002. we’re now left with the summer schedule. In the coming weeks we’ll check out How I Met Your Mother. The Wire and Freaks And Geeks. the show has found a cult following similar to Freak And Geeks. we’ll be working our way through shows we’ve missed over the years and have only now found the time to catch up on. which was also unjustifiably cancelled after one season like Undeclared. and is just the thing for a dingy summer’s day. some of the situations Steven finds himself in will have you in tears as the show manages to stay relatable. Hitting audiences with its honesty.FANTHEFIREMAGAZINE. we’re in July. Or to be honest. Experiencing the trials and tribulations of freshman life. however. they’re struggling to make up for what is usually a strong line-up every night as winter draws in. Adam Sandler. but this is certainly more of a cruder offering. Undeclared. Jason Segel also plays a minor character and along the way there are cameos from Ben Stiller. Undeclared is suitably packed with the humour that has made Apatow such a big draw at the box office. Undeclared follows the life of Steven Karp. TV ART STYLE AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 11 .COM/BLOG Waiting For The Fall: Undeclared Every year. Will Ferrell. After his work in Freaks And Geeks. after being hyped up over the summer. Initially Undeclared struggled to find an audience on TV. played by a remarkably young looking Jay Baruchel. The finest of America’s new shows. the TV-loving public waits with baited breath to see what the fall will bring. Seth Rogen plays Steven’s geeky dorm-mate Ron. To stave off the need for fall fever. if you check your calendar. but he’s suitably aided by Baruchel and the supporting cast. Since it’s release on DVD. still undeclared on his major study. Martin Starr and Kyle Gass. a bright summer’s day. crash down on the schedules from September and October as eager viewers search for their latest obsession. Starring many of the actors now propping up Apatow’s ever successful film productions. bar LOST’s now January season premières. New seasons of True Blood and Entourage are doing their best fill the gap but over a whole week. After January’s new shows and the conclusion to last year’s big hitters earlier in the year. but first Judd Apatow’s second TV breakthrough. Sadly.
MUSIC The latest Long Beach export owe a debt to Mexico for their name but this is one surf-influenced trio well at home in the thriving local LA music scene WORDS SAM BATHE Border Patrol 12 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 .
a shiv and the early 1970s. TIJUANA PANTHERS’ DEBUT EP IS AVAILABLE NOW ON ITUNES AND VIA THE BAND’S MYSPACE PAGE AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 13 . however. they’re certainly making a case for it. Phil is a high school art teacher. Tijuana. Tijuana Panthers’ laid back attitude might prove irk “ The name came out of a story my neighbor told me. ” panther. the three-piece all still hold down full time jobs. “We are going to release a few other new recordings either as singles or maybe a full length”. the Panthers have an effortless confidence and nonchalance to their music that gives it such energy and vibrancy. they’re still delighted when the invitation of a house party comes along. indeed for a band with so much talent they could and should undoubtedly be making waves across the US. In fact for the moment. not just in their homely California. it’s obvious fans’ excitement is more than justified. New songs are steadily rolling out online and with bands like The Soft Pack talking up the three-piece so highly. the port city has a thriving creative community and vibrant music scene. THEIR DEBUT EP AND single ‘Creature’ recently hit stores in their local area and online via iTunes but beyond that.FEATURE WE CERTAINLY HAVEN’T exclusively featured bands from the Los Angeles area but given the thriving music scene on the west coast. but it’s refreshing to see three musicians driven by their music. Tijuana Panthers are next on the verge of a major breakthrough. but beyond that how they move forward is pretty fluid. explains Phil. It involved him. and the centre of it all seems to be Long Beach. still certainly a band finding their feet in music. Long Beach has done it again. Chad works the everpopular graveyard shift at a restaurant and flies planes when he gets the chance and Daniel works some. They are. even playing a cover of one of their tracks at a recent show. bringing us Cold War Kids and much hyped up and coming bands Deep Sea Diver and We Barbarians in the last few years. While they cram gigs and recording sessions into their free time. “the happiest place on earth”. the Tijuana Panthers are an exciting three-piece confirming once and for all. Just south of LA. not simply filling their bank account. a black porcelain panther. To some. future plans are still somewhat up in the air. indie surf rock is back for good. a shiv. in Phil’s words. and the early 1970’s. Sounding some thing like a Link Wray influenced Strokes. Coined from a neighbour’s Tijuana tale involving a black porcelain at.
therefore. ★★★★★ 14 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 . but catchy lyrics. a large chunk of the music-loving public have grown to hate the now meteoric Coldplay. taking their fame nationwide. still devout of any imagination or witty writing to the point the record grows actively boring before the first track is even complete. was the chance to really prove their worth. and while it is an improvement. when Vicent Frank wrote and recorded debut EP ‘Frankisum’ in his Croydon flat no one would have guessed he’d soon be a highflier on BBC’s Sound of 2009 poll. they still have nothing on fellow Yorkshiremen The Arctic Monkeys. Public reaction to The Twang’s sophomore surely won’t match that of their debut. ‘Jewellery Quarter’ is sadly no better. The end result is a multi-layered reverberating LP that’ll wrap you up in one listen. therefore. has found a much needed lnew ease of live with his solo project. This second album. albeit without the piano and arrogance. the one promising talent. if not inventive. ‘Conditions’ may lack signature riffs that’ll hook you in for the long term but that’s a minor quible. instead boasting a pounding drum beat and multiple guitars.ALBUM REVIEWS DAN BLACK ‘UN’ RELEASED Out now Since the break-up of indie pencil pushers The Servant. With spikey electro tracks like ‘3 Little Words’ and ‘Gotta Boyfriend’. The cover art really says it all. ★★★★★ THE TWANG ‘JEWELLERY QUARTER’ RELEASED August 3 The fact The Twang made it big off their awful debut ‘Love It When I Feel Like This’ is as much an indictment of the state of NME as it is the British public’s mindless desire to follow the latest cool trend of band with a northern accent. boasting his. with this new direction. ‘Un’ is a fresh electro-pop album tinged with dirthy hip-hop that gives it an edge different to the recent ‘80s throwbacks. frontman Dan Black. breakthrough single ‘Heavyweight Champion Of The World’ was the making of this Sheffield six-piece. With regret. so hopefully a third might never make it to release. ★★★★★ THE TEMPER TRAP ‘CONDITIONS’ RELEASED August 10 Aggrivated by frontman Chris Martin. effortlessly sweeping from the first to last track. ★★★★★ REVEREND & THE MAKERS ‘A FRENCH KISS IN THE CHAOS’ Reverend & The Makers could have released debut album ‘The State Of Things’ RELEASED as a one-track LP and it wouldn’t have made a jot of difference. many a critic have likened The Temper Trap to the British band. Even the band July 27 will admit. Frank has got a real chance of making it in the long term but ‘Complete Me’ all too superficial for him to make his case just yet and could have done with a producer to throw a little grit into the mix. ★★★★★ FRANKMUSIK ‘COMPLETE ME’ RELEASED August 3 A bedroom music projects that got a whole lot bigger than anyone expected. It might not be as euphoric as it should be and at times Black certainly goes easy on the back beats but with tracks like ‘Alone’ and ‘Pump My Pumps’. Black could go a long way.
With Moss’ incicive lyrics and cutting songs. The latest adventure brings The Kills’ Alison Mosshart. and starting this latest LP with get-up-and-dance tracks ‘Listomania’ and ‘1901’ you can really easily get in the mood for what is very pleasing album. Some of backing to Moss’ delightful vocals. but she just about pulls it off. ★★★★★ MSTRKRFT ‘FIST OF GOD’ RELEASED August 3 Far more eclectic and accessible than their last hard electro release ‘The Looks’. Now on their fourth studio album. could do with a little work and at several points lies on the brink of falling into repetition and mediocrity. That day isn’t today. itself reminiscent of Gnarles Barkley. she certainly has a lot to say and displays maturity far beyond her years. which is all well and good the first few times around. they’re not awful. on board alongside White. QOTSA’s Dean Fertita and previous contributor in The Raconteurs. Tommy Sparks’ self-titled record plays in fits and starts aside the real headline makers dotted throughout. it’s all a little boring. the one key difference. Daft Punk and Phoenix. but by now. Sparks’ potential is obvious and singles ‘She’s Got Me Dancing’ and ‘I’m A Rope’ show an aptitude for knowing what makes a great catchy pop track but the stuff either side isn’t really up to much. Jack Lawrence. ★★★★★ PHOENIX ‘WOLFGANG AMADEUS PHOENIX’ RELEASED Out now Growing up in Paris’ afluent suburb Versailles might not be the usual place for the foundation of amazing music but after Air. Far from it. still need not be put off. even if they boast a few more lyrics than you might have expected. however. ‘Walfgang Amadeus Phoenix’ is their best yet. ‘First Love’ would be a joyous affair. times have changed. ★★★★★ THE DEAD WEATHER ‘HOREHOUND’ RELEASED Out now One day we’ll have a new Jack White side project that won’t sound like The White Stripes with more instruments. ★★★★★ TOMMY SPARKS ‘TOMMY SPARKS’ RELEASED August 10 As is the problem of a largely album filler debut. Perhaps at this point another EP would have been more appropriate until Sparks has a full LP to really make his mark on the chart and not this fumbled effort. even mainstream electro-poppers will be able to find a route in. From Daft Punk-esque ‘1000 Cigarettes’ to single ‘Heartbreaker’.ALBUM REVIEWS EMMY THE GREAT ‘FIRST LOVE’ RELEASED August 10 You might expect from Emma-Lee Moss’ stage name Emmy The Great and the generally upbeat and churpy nature of folk music. They share a few parallels with British band The Hoosiers. ‘Horehound’ is grungey gothic rock as you’d expect boasting White’ trademark scaling riffs at every turn. Old fans. Tracks like ‘Click Click’ are back to the norm. ★★★★★ AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 15 . ‘Fist Of God’ marks a big step forward in terms of MSTRKRFT forging a career from their own tracks alongside their hugely successful remixing. a masterclass in spritely electro-rock-pop. however.
Apparently someone has found a way to kill surrogates and their parent bodies simultaneously. which all sounds fairly promising. sports a shaven head as his ‘real self’. Bruce Willis launches an investigation. Haircuts aside the concept is interesting and is certainly relevant in an age when the average person spends more and more time staring at a computer screen. When two surrogates are killed. Eventually he is forced to abandon his surrogate and exist in the real world as himself. Jonathan Mostow’s film continues the ongoing and seemingly limitless trend of comic book adaptations. The film joins the already overcrowded genre of sci-fi conspiracy thrillers. Until now. who at first appears to be following in the footsteps of Tom Hanks’ Robert Langdon in the bad haircut stakes. this time bringing Robert Venditti’s 2005-2006 work to the screen.FILM SURROGATES RELEASED September 25 Surrogates shares some similarities with the idea behind the Matrix trilogy. Venditti explained when Surrogates was first published that the inspiration behind the story came from reports of people’s real lives suffering as a result of their dedication to online personas. There hasn’t been a murder for fifteen years. robotic representations of themselves through which they can ‘be whoever they want to be’ and live a safe existence free from harm. Thankfully Bruce Willis. Hopefully the concept will ring true amidst the action and raise Surrogates above the level of the generic sci-fi thrillers we’ve had recently. people are plugged into machines that allow them to live their lives through ‘surrogates’. but looks vaguely like a cross between iRobot and Minority Report with a bit of the Matrix thrown in for good measure. Eagle Eye amongst the main offenders. open to danger and death for the first time in years. at least on paper. 16 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 . In the near future.
PREVIEWS AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 17 .
and everybody always has. in which leading lady Jennifer Garner enjoys herself by insulting Gervais in a variety of situations. naturally. which includes new comedy go-to-guy Jonah Hill. gives rise to much deadpan honesty (read: insults) and a swathe of self-deprecating humour. a project he has co-written and co-directed. Still. of Superbad fame. and really cement his reputation for filmmaking aside his already glowing TV credits for work on The Office and Extras. That much is clear from previews. are all solid. After the warm reception of David Koepp’s Ghost Town. Gervais is an intelligent writer. It’s a simple. the concept itself is funny and the supporting cast. but one that seems to suit Gervais’ knack for uncomfortable. until Mark (Gervais) breaks the trend and comes to realise the potential power of lies in a world where nobody can comprehend a mistruth.PREVIEWS THE INVENTION OF LYING RELEASED September 25 (USA) October 2 (UK) In the alternate reality of Ricky Gervais’ latest foray into the Hollywood mainstream. everybody always tells the truth. 18 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 . another success here could solidify Gervais as a reliable leading man on the silver screen. That is. so there’s no reason to assume this will happen. but there is a danger that the concept could be worn thin rather quickly if the characters aren’t interesting enough to justify it. This. high-concept film. that film could descend into one-track comedy. of course. dry humour. There is a risk.
PREVIEWS AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 19 .
2012 is coming.PREVIEWS 2012 RELEASED November 13 Should we be worried about Roland Emmerich? Surely anyone who takes such an obvious delight in obliterating humanity over and over again is worth a phone tap at least? Anyway. A story? If you only watched the trailer you could be forgiven for being unsure. ‘Nuff said. 20 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 . Massive special effects? Check. we know what to expect. with the usual Emmerich credentials. Amanda Peet provides support as his ex-wife and Danny Glover is the President of the United States. and sooner than you might expect. The last time Cusack starred as a writer he was wrestling with his inner demons inside a haunted hotel room in the under-appreciated 1408. Massive budget? Check. Global disaster. this is somewhat larger in scale. mankind struggles to survive. There’s little in the way of dialogue. Still. Again. “Mankind’s earliest civilisation warned us this day would come” we are told. John Cusack stars as Jackson Curtis. Explosions? You bet. November 2009. a writer whose family are caught up in the destruction. Brace yourselves for the end of the world. before the world gets destroyed by all manner of natural disasters.
PREVIEWS AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 21 .
but very few are from high profile directors and barely make a cinematic release. You’re much more of a spectator than another body in the film. under an 18 rating. and von Trier uses the scenes to shock and portray what lengths people will go to under self duress. Despite Antichrist’s good intentions. although it might take a second viewing to really delve into the deeper and hidden meanings. For all its wonder. four people fainted. In one screening. In the UK the uncut version has been passed for release. the film is deeply rooted in reality. Where a mature mind might be able to understand and cope with a higher rated film on certain occasions. only things soon start to take a turn for the worse. the pair have created a film that should most definitely be classed as a work of visual art. and Antichrist would be too much if it were the other way around. Antichrist shocked the film world like very few films have ever done before. harsh feel to the cinematography. This is a film that will split audiences. black and white prologue. Set-up by a stunning. Though Antichrist was pitched to distributors at Cannes with “Catho- lic” and “Protestant” versions. given how cinematic audiences have grown increasingly hardened to graphic violence and dark and distressing scenes. in no way glamorising the violence. however. despite breathtaking performances by Defoe and Gainsbourg. but given the content. Eden. often classified under the ‘torture porn’ moniker. a professional therapist.REVIEWS ANTICHRIST Premiering at this year’s Cannes Film Festival to a storm of both criticism and critical acclaim. to allow for a wider audience to go see the film? Without a doubt. but in America it is very likely distributor IFC Films will choose the “Catholic” version. but all should undoubtedly concede. Though a lot of people will not see past some of Antichrist’s most shocking scenes. Antichrist is set apart from films toting similar scenes. slow-motion. constant gloomy ambience and remarkable focal work. she (Gainsbourg) wakes up in hospital a month later. With the violent scenes and cold. is in the latter stages of his grief. it feels like it could make you jump out of your seat at any moment thanks to a simple and remarkably powerful score. cinematic art at its finest. Films with shocking. you really need to see the full edit. ★★★★★ . it is a masterpiece. though the rollercoaster ride might take its toll along the way. and uses the graphic imagery to help get its messages across. it does in fact have a lot to say. Certain actions no doubt bring comparison to the likes of the Hostel and Saw series. and likewise in von Trier’s native Denmark. Vital to Antichrist’s success. From the slow-motion prologue and epilogues to the stunning forest shots. Because of the way director Lars von Trier treats the narrative. Upon reaching the closing credits. Antichrist is still not a film you can particularly enjoy. Antichrist lay destined for infamy rather than now sitting on the brink of a worldwide release. Aside from Antichrist’s shocking sequences. At first it’s very hard to know what to make of Antichrist. this is a blessing in disguise. Antichrist follows an unnamed couple whose son accidentally kills himself. some will love it. Towards the end of the film. If the brutal violence is not too much. Should the film be cut therefore. but this is a 22 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 DIRECTED BY Lars von Trier STARRING Willem Defoe & Charlotte Gainsbourg RELEASED July 24 (UK) October 23 (USA) completely different affair. never mind receive so much press coverage. and while that is pale in comparison to the 20 during a screening of 2002’s Irreversible. however. constructed. and intelligently. violence are frequently made. she is only just starting the turmoil. Antichrist has the power to haunt a viewer for some time and is an experience not to be taken lightly. The backbone to maintaining such a powerful overtone is von Trier’s ability to create unremitting tension. this is one release where the rating has to be adhered to. the couple head out to their forest home. After winning an Oscar for his work on Slumdog Millionaire. to have the full effect of von Trier’s vision. and has a lot to say about parenthood and modern culture’s obsession with sex. Some of the action is shocking to the extreme. von Trier’s motives slowly become apparent as the film draws to a very rounded conclusion. alongside von Trier. the former with several scenes removed and the latter uncut. To help her understand and get to grips with her heart-wrenching anguish. and a completely different vision. you’ll really feel like you’ve achieved something by sitting through the whole film. the film will likely still be too much for large portions of cinema-going audiences. and most shocking. After collapsing at the funeral. or fear the box office crippling NC-17 classification. no. Antichrist is somewhat emotionally uninvolving. this is a completely different project. While Antichrist isn’t necessarily a scary film. and while he (Defoe). Coupled with the unnerving rat-a-tat of acorns falling on the roof of the couple’s forest getaway and the haunting atmosphere is complete. not better. the overarching themes are so wickedly. it can be all too easy to overlook what is a masterclass by cinematographer Anthony Dod Mantle. here often sexual. more an experience to admire. and no doubt encompasses acts of violence or scenes of a sexual nature many won’t have experienced on screen before. At least not with a serious overtone. some will hate it.
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I Love You. And even then. (500) Days Of Summer reinvents the genre. female audiences have been lapping up the lazy rom-coms. The aforementioned (500) Days Of Summer proves rom-coms can go the extra mile and offer something different. no doubt about it. Cheryl Hines & Nick Searcy RELEASED July 24 (USA) August 7 (USA) obvious this wouldn’t be the film the push the boundaries and the generic chick-flick genre. The production values for The Ugly Truth are expectedly high and a decent budget certainly adds to the grandeur of the film but working with a incredibly lazy script. I always harbour a little hope the director and writers have tried to do a little more. as what Heigl’s latest love affair lacks . uptight and controlling Abby is struggling to find love despite her stunning good looks. you can guess the ending with some confidence. sure. or the poster. as the female crowd flock back time and time again for each lifeless offering. the clichéd appeal of two attractive Hollywood stars failing to admit their obvious love is guaranteed to have a much stronger. but the likes of P. far from boundary breaking dialogue and a plot without any real connections to the real lives of the female audiences that will go to see it.S. Upon hearing the synopsis of The Ugly Truth. Forever dreaming of the perfect man. And yet. Bride Wars and 27 Dresses really shouldn’t be making the cut. After bickering over his rudimentary views of love and lust. the clichés are more a problem with the genre. to the numerous chick-flick clichés. and his mere arrival causes a stir with Abbey. messing up every potential relationship before it even gets going. There have been very accomplished films along the way. chick-flicks have been getting a free ride. opening weekend. once again. Gerald Butler. her TV show is struggling for ratings. and though it’ll have a very successful long run through word of mouth. Unlike some chick-flicks where the easy can be relatively entertaining despite being a generally awful film. girl either goes after the wrong boy or the relationship with dreamy boy breaks down. True. girl kisses dreamy boy as the credits roll. Abbey is forced to take on public television rising star Mike (Butler). a handful of fresh ideas and a ‘twist’ at the end that the entire audience didn’t predict upon walking into the theatre. His show The Ugly Truth offers straight up relationship advice and insights on the male psyche. troubled girl meets dreamy boy. The Ugly Truth is a film only die-hard Heigl and chick-flick fans need worry about. John Michael Higgins. Bree Turner. showing up the The Ugly Truth’s plot as utterly bereft of imagination. In a last ditch attempt to save the morning programme. The Ugly Truth sadly falls a crop. Though reviews in all magazines but Cosmopolitan will tell you to stay away at all costs. she can get any man she wants. it soon became fairly 24 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 DIRECTED BY Robert Luketic STARRING Katherine Heigl. and box office top spot cementing. Though the Hollywood glamour might lead you along the stuttering narrative. ★★★★★ . To make matters worse. he bets Abby that with his advice. but with an open mind I stepped into the world of morning TV show producer Abby (Heigl). Eric Winter.is invention. Perhaps it is a little naive to think they’ll ever change. as time and again. and I won’t deny that for many men they remain a guilty pleasure. studios will out the chick-flicks out for some time yet. The frustrating and frequently offensive views of both the male and female sex draw very few laughs as Heigl’s talent showcased in Knocked Up deserts her. but with every new offering. The Ugly Truth grows boring towards the end. takes up his challenge. but that doesn’t excuse the film’s complete lack of effort to inject even an ounce of energy. you can definitely do better in the screen next door.REVIEWS THE UGLY TRUTH For a long while. and upon meeting her handsome neighbour. If you’ve seen the trailer.
and yet still feels satisfying enough as a sole entity. which is to Richet’s credit. The film is shot with a suave style. is worth the investment. whom you may remember from Eastern Promises and Derailed. Gérard Depardieu is right at home as Jean de Florette. As the closing credits draw in you’re RELEASED August 7 DIRECTED BY Jean-François Richet STARRING Vincent Cassel. 1 tagline. Public Enemy No. even if you don’t bother with number 2. Almost trumping Cassel’s great performance.REVIEWS MESRINE: KILLER INSTINCT The first of a gangster double bill directed and co-written by JeanFrançois Richet retelling the life of infamous French criminal Jacques Mesrine (Cassel). and to complete the story. Killer Instinct sets the foundations for Richet’s second forthcoming Mesrine film. 1. a gangster a couple of rungs up the ladder who works with Mesrine on several cons. leaves it essential you catch the follow-up. and given its breakneck pace and edge of your seat tension. Cécile De France. from an effortless CCTV montage in the opening scene to Godfatheresque wide-angle shots. ★★★★★ AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 25 . engaging in low level bank robbery and murder before going on the run with his cohorts. Combined with a romantic side-story that comes to an interesting. Richet manages to get the audience to root for him despite his atrocious acts of violence. though Mesrine: Killer Instinct is based on a true story it does fall a crop to the usual gangster working his way up to the top clichés. Ludivine Sagnier. Played brilliantly by Vincent Cassel. Emerging as something of a homage to classic gangster films both in its native France and across the Atlantic in Hollywood. and on some level at least. some of Killer Instinct’s hard work is undone but far from the whole package. upon his return to France he soon becomes fascinated with the gangster lifestyle. Mesrine is portrayed as a brutal and menacing criminal but charming man deep beneath. Gérard Depardieu & Michel Duchaussoy greeted with a ‘what happened next’ for all the characters bar our titular criminal. falling somewhere between style and brawn as the action scenes slot nicely into the artistic direction. Killer Instinct is set in the 1960s before Mesrine attracting the Public Enemy No. Picking up first during Mesrine’s time with the French military where he is given the job of executing tortured prisoners. though somewhat peculiar end. charting his rise to ascendancy the wrong side of the French law.
and it’s especially nice to see Christian Bale in a role without his Batman voice. backed up by the rest of Dillinger’s gang. Dillinger was effectively public enemy number one as the FBI attempted to stop the lawlessness in Midwest America. Channing Tatum. however. that portray their roles with great confidence and maturity. Public Enemies lacks a focus and drive. Public Enemies is an enjoyable experience but it feels like it could have been a whole lot more and another gangster classic.REVIEWS PUBLIC ENEMIES Set in the Great Depression of 1930s America. Though the film is very accomplished. and barely planning beyond the end of the week. Marion Cotillard. Set in many of the real locations that Dillinger’s remarkable life was 26 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 DIRECTED BY Michael Mann STARRING Johnny Depp. Stephen Dorff & Stephen Graham RELEASED Out now thrown back and forth. In the great crime wave in the 1930s. with Public Enemies. John Dillinger (Depp). Robbing banks at will. Dillinger drew sympathy from the American public for his thirst for life and good treatment of any hostage momentarily taken on robberies. Led by agent Melvin Purvis (Bale). The characters emerge on screen near fully formed and undergo minimal development throughout the film as you’re meant to know every detail about the characters before you enter the cinema to really get the most out of it. Public Enemies immerses you in the life in the 1930s and Dillinger’s fearless nature. Christian Bale. Michael Mann should have a masterpiece on his hands. ★★★★★ . and FBI coined ‘public enemy’. it lacks the wow factor and real depth of purpose to set it apart. Perhaps the film should have cut with a quicker pacing. Public Enemies tells the real life story of legendary bank robber. but somehow. he doesn’t. producing a leading cast. the high production values are as you’d expect from Michael Mann and his supreme attention to detail really pay off. and it does deserve credit for creating a lovable criminal in Dillinger. Oscar-winning Marion Cotillard plays as love interest Billie Frechette with the ever reliable duo of Johnny Depp and Christian Bale. despite Mann’s passion for the story. as it became his life’s mission to at last apprehend the criminal. Dillinger became the focus of the FBI’s efforts. Alongside some stunning cinematography and a fitting soundtrack.
The story starts to lose its way the moment Ferrell and co. Similarly the CGI finds major issues fitting in. Beyond the time warp idea there’s no real development to the lost soles and their adventure sems to be a lot of chasing around for no reason at all. they don’t have the unabashed campy joy boasted by the TV show.REVIEWS LAND OF THE LOST Based on the 1974 television series of the same name. as the film drags on. John Boylan & Bobb’e J. you can sadly see why Land Of The Lost struggled at the box office. The only problem. the script and plot are remarkably reserved as the film lacks any real sense of urgency or force. The film feels very lethargic with gags that fall flat. the monstrous creatures comes across as nothing more than a bunch of moving pixels and you don’t get the sense they’re in the scene with the actors. ★★★★★ AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 27 . you can help but wonder what a difference it would have made if the costumes were more developed and refined. Focussing on Dr. Performing way below expectation in its native America. Land Of The Lost is the latest Will Ferrell vehicle to storm the film industry. a once revolutionary scientist whose obsession with time warps has destroyed his reputation and career. while the costumes for the parallel universe races the Pakuni and the Sleestaks are an homage to the original series and intentionally unrealistic. they need to find a way to get back. they’re thrown down and endless waterfall only to awake in new world filled with dinosaurs and mysterious creatures. Worse still. Using the device at a roadside boating attraction. Though it might yet find a cult audience on DVD. Jorma Taccone. The intentional cheap look shouldn’t have cost anywhere near the $100m budget and with a sloppy and unimaginative script and faily dull and drab narrative. if you pass on Land Of The Lost in theatres you won’t be missing too much. Thompson RELEASED Out now (USA) July 29 (UK) quirky little asides. touch down in the parallel universe. Anna Friel. and while in Transformers the robots really feel part of the human world. along with tour guide Will (McBride). here. when a fan of his work. caught between two audiences. The T-Rex and other dinosaurs feel very much separate to the action. adapting the childrens TV show or the big screen and an R-rated comedy for fans of Will Ferrell and Danny McBride. Holly (Friel). Rick Marshall (Ferrell). Though it would have brought a different feel to the background non-human forms. Despite Will Ferell’s ever dependable performance and DIRECTED BY Brad Silberling STARRING Will Ferrell. Danny McBride. unbeknownst in their own universe. Land Of The Lost could have been a whole lot more. Rick at last makes good on a lifetime of work. encourages him to finish his tachyon amplifier to help them travel into a parallel universe.
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REVIEWS IMAGINE THAT Whether he’s been trying to or not. Any banking quips will go straight over children’s heads and aren’t witty enough to entertain adults. two of which push high of all-time worst ever movie lists. an Academy Award nomination for his performance in Dreamgirls should have been the jumping board for even greater. Imagine That does somehow orchestrate a closing sequence might pull a couple of heartstrings but that’s despite raising barely a care for the characters throughout everything that went before it. Meet Dave and Shrek The Third. Imagine That is far from the film to perk up Eddie Murphy’s lagging reputation. and more serious. Thomas Haden Church & Yara Shahidi RELEASED Out now (USA) August 14 (UK) the most unexpected of corners. The mere concept is a little ridiculous. a children’s film about finance. After storming onto the scene in the early 1980s with a regular role on Saturday Night Live and the start of the Beverly Hills Cop series and then re-invigorating what became a period of slack roles in the late 1990s. and neither does Murphy’s obsession with pulling stupid faces. but it is not a remarkable children’s film by any stretch of the imagination. for which you would have been easily forgiven for walking out of the cinema. the promise is some way off being fulfilled. but whether their heads are in the crowds is another question all together. Furthermore. Eddie Murphy has done a good job of throwing his career away for the second time in recent years. Since then. His performance is again is hugely disap- pointing for a man widely regarded as being one of the best ever standup comedians in his heyday. he faces a fight with scheming colleague Johnny Whitefeather (Haden Church) to fill the role. however. the often slapstick comedy hardly raises a laugh. Optimists will tell you Imagine That is the sweet child-friendly film to pull back waning fans. but it is literally a couple. ★★★★★ AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 29 . certainly is much better than Meet Dave and Norbit. finds advice and inspiration from DIRECTED BY Karey Kirkpatrick STARRING Eddie Murphy. Evan quickly works his way up to the top of the company but when the owner declares he will be leaving. especially for kids. and though it does provide some potentially funny and entertaining moments. and that’s nowhere near enough humour. To its credit. Though Thomas Haden Church is similarly frustrating in his misplayed role. and the grandeur from a remarkable $55m budget is nowhere to be seen. The concept at least. With the help apparently magical towel and three imaginary friends. is something new. and the other a low-grade money making sell-out. You might chuckle a couple of times. Working together. success. Murphy has followed up 2006’s Oscar awards with Norbit. however. whom on a similarly downward spiral. Dropping Murphy in the shoes of investment banker Evan Danielson. Evan is given market recommendations from his daughter (Shahidi). young Yara Shahidi shows a lot of potential as Olivia Danielson. Imagine That. While this is a marked improvement on his recent horror-shows.
and once again with hilarious results. Film ★★★★★ Extras ★★★★★ KNOWING Entertaining. Film ★★★★★ Extras ★★★★★ ROBOT CHICKEN STAR WARS EP 2 Cult stop-motion sketch show Robot Chicken turns its attention to Star Wars for a second time. Zach Snyder’s offering is as good as we could have ever hoped for and hold true to the plot. concludes the earth is soon to end. Film ★★★★★ Extras ★★★★★ LESBIAN VAMPIRE KILLERS James Corden and Matthew Horne’s failed attempt to break cinema. Film ★★★★★ Extras ★★★★★ . starring as outcasts who go on a backpaccking trip only to be caught in a vampire infested village. Film ★★★★★ Extras ★★★★★ FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS S2 The highly anticipated second season of the all singing.DVD REVIEWS CADILLAC RECORDS Though riddled with the usual clichés that hold back this genre. Film ★★★★★ Extras ★★★★★ WATCHMEN Overly long adaptation of the classic graphic novel. Very cleverly written and always superbly acted. Cadillac Records is a solid biopic delving into the life of music exec. until when he finishes the code. only to forget who’s conning who as Duplicity builds for a blockbuster finale. For both Star Wars fans and newcomers. all dancing comedy about a mock two-piece folk band. Leonard Chess and Chess Records. Film ★★★★★ Extras ★★★★★ 30 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 DUPLICITY Romantically tinged comedy spy-thriller as two spies attempt to con their employees and each other out of a fortune. Film ★★★★★ Extras ★★★★★ HUSH Striking low budget British horror/thriller that maintains effortless suspense until the very last moment as poster re-stocker attempts to rescue his girlfriend from her truckdriving kidnapper. though poorly plotted thriller that sees Nicholas Cage decipher a secret code to predict disasters across the world. but after being branded ‘unfilmable’ by Terry Gilliam.
A must have for any music and comedy fan.. Familiar faces return including hapless manager Murray (Rhys Darby. love and their pursuit of an elusive music video…. Shepherds B. hilarious songs including ‘Sugalumps’: ‘All these bitches checkin’ out my britches/ Put ‘em in a trance/ When I wear track pants’ and Fashion is Danger’: ‘I’m larger than life with just a hint of lace’.com. after Bret frivolously decides that they need more than one coffee cup in their apartment.COMPETITION Get Ready to Folk! New Zealand’s fourth most popular folk parody duo Flight Of The Conchords are back to take on New York in the second season of their four time Emmy-nominated smash hit comedy released on DVD on 3 August by HBO Home Entertainment. The Boat That Rocked. The DVD is packed with special features including outtakes. To be in with a chance of winning the season 2 box set for yourself. dating an Australian – a massive taboo in New Zealand and even firing Murray who has to prove to them just why he’s the man for the job. Mel (Kristen Shaal). Peep Show or Gavin and Stacey you’re in for a treat. their obsessive Super-fan and Doug (David Costabile). Deadline 07/08/09. Over the course of the new season they resort to a variety of ridiculous and unconventional strategies in an attempt to jump-start their lives and career. The bands efforts rarely yield dividends but do spawn new tunes about life. simply answer the following question: Lead characters Jemaine and Bret used to be what before becoming musicians? A. To celebrate the release we are giving away 3 DVD copies of Season 2. Yes Man). Dave’s Pawn Shop Commercials’ and a hilarious dance clip hidden ‘Easter Egg’. her long-suffering husband. working as prostitutes to pay off a reckless cup purchase. There’s a whole host of new. Builders C. deleted scenes and several featurettes including a mini documentary on the band’s pursuit of fame. the show has grown from cult to mainstream status. Lawyers Email your answer to competitions@fanthefiremagazine. Music comedy duo Jemaine Clement and Bret McKenzie return as the hapless musicians who left their native New Zealand for New York’s Lower East Side in a bid for world domination. who still works at the bare-bones New Zealand consulate. If you’ve seen the BBC4 broadcast or are a fan of the comedy stylings of The Mighty Boosh. AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 31 . starting up a gang to protect themselves from rappers they’ve dissed in their songs.
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